The current violence in Israel-Palestine—immediately following the debate about the Iran arms deal, which revealed growing fissures in American support of Israel–has brought the conflict into the foreground of U.S. political discourse. The absence of any serious mention of Israel-Palestine during the first Democratic presidential debate thus speaks volumes. It tells us that even as polls show more and more of the Democratic base shifting its support away from Israel, the leading candidates for the Democratic nomination are reluctant to talk about Israel. It will be interesting to see if they shift their stances at all in the next few months, given the stakes that are emerging. Recent polls have shown that Latinos, a critical constituency, are lending their sympathy to the Palestinians. They join the young, progressives, Blacks, and Asian Americans. This is not only the perception of supporters of Palestinian rights, this point of view is shared by advocates of Israel as well.
Everything seems in play, and that calls for our attention. Here’s what is unfolding on the American political scene:
To begin with, let’s look at the reactions of the U.S. State Department regarding the escalation of violence in Israel-Palestine. On October 13, Secretary of State John Kerry declared “What’s happening is that, unless we get going, a two-state solution could conceivably be stolen from everybody… And there’s been a massive increase in settlements over the course of the last years, and now you have this violence because there’s a frustration that is growing.”
Upon being accused of laying the blame for the violence on the building of settlements, the State Department rushed to back off from the October 13 statement:
“State Department spokesman John Kirby told reporters that Kerry had not been ‘trying to affix… blame for the recent violence’ during a Tuesday evening address at Harvard University, when the secretary told his audience that ‘there’s been a massive increase in settlements over the course of the last years and there’s an increase in the violence because there’s this frustration that’s growing.’ The two ideas, Kirby suggested, were not meant to be interpreted causally.”
Right. It’s hard to believe anyone bought that spin. What this flip-flop indicates is precisely the fluid state of our political discourse on Israel-Palestine.
Jesus Is My Savior...He Saves Me From REALITY! --------------------------------------------- We created god in our own image and likeness! [George Carlin] --------------------------------------------- "Reason & Logic" - A Damn Good Slogan! --------------------------------------------- "Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion." - Steven Weinberg, an American physicist
Fair enough. But Liberals - those to the extreme Left, at least - pretend to have the moral high ground.
Conservatives - those to the extreme religious right - believe they are being more Godly by supporting Bibi Netanyahu and the Israeli far right, at the cost of any moral high ground at all, ignoring what a lying, race-baiting, adulterous, corrupt pandering liar Bibi is.
Recently Bibi went so far as to absolve the Nazis of some of the guilt for the holocaust, stating that the whole unfortunate business would never have happened if it had not been for the influence of the grand Mufti. Poor misunderstood Hitler was only going to deport the Jews, according to Bibi, but the Mufti told Hitler to exterminate them instead.
There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge. Isaac Asimov